Carpentry College Program Information

Certificate and associate's degree programs in carpentry are designed for individuals wishing to enter the construction industry as carpenters and carpenters' helpers.

Essential Information

Carpentry programs at the certificate and associate's degree levels provide education in basic carpentry practices. Those wishing to obtain a more advanced degree can pursue a bachelor's degree in construction management or building construction management. Hands-on training is an essential part of all of these programs.

25-30 credits are required for certificates, while associate's degrees generally entail two years of study. Internships are commonly required for graduation.

Certificate in Carpentry

Programs leading to a certificate in carpentry prepare students to use a variety of tools, read blueprints and develop skills in rough framing of walls, floors and roofs. The curriculum of a carpentry certificate program focuses on fundamental concepts and techniques. Program coursework will include:

  • Basic carpentry practices
  • Basic finish carpentry
  • Framing fundamentals
  • Use of basic hand and power tools
  • Carpentry safety
  • Blueprint reading

Associate's Degree in Carpentry

Associate's degree programs in carpentry are 2-year degree plans that teach various theories, techniques and applications used in the building trades. These programs typically lead to an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree. Graduates are prepared for entry-level jobs as carpenters, finish carpenters, home remodelers, framers and woodworkers.

The program coursework for an associate's degree program in carpentry helps students increase their carpentry, framing, siding, finishing and roofing skills. In addition to more advanced courses in some of the carpentry topics found in a certificate program, the curriculum might include:

  • Building materials
  • Remodeling theories
  • Small business management
  • Carpentry mathematics
  • Building codes
  • Carpentry practicum

Popular Career Options

Graduates of a carpentry certificate program are qualified to begin work as carpenters' helpers or apprentices for construction companies, government agencies, manufacturing companies or for self-employed carpenters. One can specialize in a particular area of carpentry, such as:

  • Framing
  • Cabinet making
  • Furniture making
  • Finish carpentry

Employment Outlook and Salary Info

A 6% increase in the employment of carpenters between 2014 and 2024 is projected by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. In May 2015, carpenters earned a median hourly wage of $20.24.

Continuing Education Information

While there are currently no advanced programs in carpentry available, students seeking to obtain a bachelor's degree can major in construction management. These programs focus on carpentry and construction methods, analysis and design. Courses in project management, staffing, cost estimating and site preparation are part of some 4-year degree programs. Some colleges and universities also offer a master's degree in this field.

Students looking to go into carpentry can consider certificate and associate's programs that provide instruction in the various tools and operations involved in the trade. Graduates are often ready to work as assistants to established carpenters before becoming professionals in the field.

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